By: Gerri Elder
January 19, 2011
While consumer bankruptcy filings increased 9 percent nationwide last year, the metro Detroit area witnessed a 1.2 percent decrease in personal bankruptcies.
Some local bankruptcy attorneys claim that the drop is far from a cause for celebration, however. They cite other figures that point to prolonged economic turmoil in the area, according to the Detroit News. Bankruptcy filings in 2010 were still 50 percent higher than those witnessed in 2007, and between that time and 2010, Chapter 13 bankruptcy filings have fallen. Since Chapter 13 bankruptcy requires a steady income that facilitates the gradual repayment of some debts, the drop may indicate that many don't have the means to file for this form of bankruptcy, according to some experts.
Some bankruptcy attorneys claim that large numbers of people moved out of Michigan during the recession and ended up filing for bankruptcy elsewhere.
"We're the only state in the union that lost population in the last 10 years," one attorney explained.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Michigan's unemployment rate was 12.4 in November 2010.